The White House became America’s fashion mecca on Wednesday, as Michelle Obama hosted fashion students and notable designers for a day-long fashion workshop. Narciso Rodriguez, Thom Browne, Reed Krakoff, Prabal Gurung, Diane von Furstenberg, Jimmy Choo’s Sandra Choi, Opening Ceremony’s Humberto Leon and Carol Lim, Jenna Lyons, Lela Rose and Zac Posen were among the advisers, and Anna Wintour was on hand to introduce the First Lady.
The budding designers and “technologists” took part in workshops throughout the day, giving them the chance to learn from and socialize with some of the top names in the industry. From early job experiences to their first tastes of success, the designers bestowed their expertise and knowledge on the next generation of fashion influencers. “Fashion is about so much more than just a pretty pair of pumps or the perfect hemline. For so many people across the country, it is a calling, it is a career, and it’s a way they feed their families," said the First Lady.
Architecture students from Parsons used donated books to make the backdrop, pillars, centerpieces, mantelpieces and other adornments that complimented Obama’s dress (which was designed by FIT student Natalya Koval). Additionally, the White House’s East Corridor was lined with mannequins showcasing the designer dresses she has worn over the years.
Throughout the day, Obama and her famous guests urged students to take full advantage of the opportunity they were given—to “make the most of it.” Leave it to DVF, though, to offer the most sage words of the day, “Hard work is always fun if you like what you do. And your most infuriating moments will wind up being the best sources and the best stories when you’re famous.”